Calls to open borders as interstate tourists dream of Noosa
AUSTRALIANS are planning to flock to Noosa and the Coast for holidays in the next few months, but those plans could be thwarted if Queensland Government stands firm on border lockdowns.
A survey, commissioned by the Tourism and Transport Forum (TTF), asked over 1500 people their travel intentions over the next six months as COVID 19 restrictions are gradually lifted.
The most popular destinations were the Gold Coast with 53 per cent and the Sunshine Coast/Noosa with 36 per cent while 30 per cent said they would go to Brisbane and another 20 per cent chose Tropical North Queensland.
Noosa tourism businesses have an opportunity to reclaim some ground over the lucrative July school holiday period.
But it is not likely to happen given Premier Palaszczuk’s suggestion that interstate borders would not be opened until September.
TTF CEO Margy Osmond was sensitive to the direction from Government, but she felt tourism businesses would be missing out on a chance to rebuild after the gradual relaxation of the strict social restrictions.
“We understand the concerns of the Queensland Government but think July is a realistic date for the reopening of state borders given the progress we have made in flattening the curve and to delay that until September is a missed opportunity and will have a devastating economic impact on the state’s winter holiday peak,” she said.
“Ideally the industry would like to see a consistent approach to the reopening of state and territory borders that address the health concerns but also set us firmly on the path to recovery.”
“Our survey shows that people are eager to start travelling and relaxation is their priority so the beautiful beaches and warm climate of Queensland are very alluring,” she said.
“Unfortunately, at this stage that’s looking like more of a dream than a reality if Queensland continues to batten down its hatches.”